WASHINGTON - In a bold strike, the Federal Reserve slashed a key interest rate by a half point on Tuesday - the first cut in over four years - and left the door open to further relief to prevent a painful housing slump and jarring credit crunch from driving the country into recession.
Wall Street responded enthusiastically, propelling stocks up 335.97 points - its biggest one-day point jump in nearly five years. Politicians, shaken by record-high home foreclosures, also welcomed the move.
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